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Ecommerce Holiday Spending Statistics, Trends and Insights 2020 [Infographic]

Updated on December 8, 2021

6 Min Read
Holiday Spending Statistics 2020

The Holiday Season is just around the corner. It’s the perfect time to highlight the holiday spending statistics from the previous year, and talk about some of the stats in 2020.

Of course, the world seems quite different today than it was a year ago. The COVID-19 pandemic has completely changed the way we do business or online business and has drastically impacted holiday shopping and sales. But, while some of the stats paint a somber picture, it’s not all doom and gloom.

As retail shopping dipped, ecommerce shopping continued to grow. So, without further ado, let’s delve into the latest holiday spending stats of 2020!

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The Gist of Holiday Sales Season 2020 [Infographic]

Holiday Spending Statistics 2020

Holiday Spending Statistics 2020

In 2019, holiday sales surpassed the trillion dollar mark for the first time, with average US spending coming to $1,536 for every household, as per eMarketer.

Ecommerce spending in the United States posted another new record, reaching a peak of $142.5 billion. It rose by 13.1%, as per data from Adobe. Adobe also stated that smartphone sales accounted for 84% of 2019’s ecommerce growth.

Other groundbreaking stats related to ecommerce spending by Adobe in 2019 are as follows:

  • Average daily online revenue went further than the $2.3 billion across the holiday season, growing from $2.1 billion in 2018, resulting in a 13% gain and outpacing overall retail growth of 4%
  • Each day, during the peak season, sales exceeded $1 billion in online sales apart from Christmas Eve, and there were 29 days of $2 billion plus of sales, rising from 26 in 2018)
  • For the first time in history, smartphone purchases accounted for more than $50 billion in seasonal sales
  • The $100 billion sales mark was hit six days earlier in 2019, Dec. 9 vs. Dec. 15 from 2018.

However, holiday spending in 2020 obviously has a different face than it did in 2019. In 2020, around 40% of Americans are expected to spend less money than they did the previous year. This is understandable due to the impact of the Coronavirus globally, which has wiped out millions of jobs and led to a serious downturn in the economy.

Holiday Spending in 2020 – Economic Disruption

Finder reports that 40% of Americans adults are going to spend less during the holiday season this year. Almost 46% of those over the age of 65 are expected to spend much less this Christmas.

Impact on Retailers

The impact of the coronavirus will be keenly felt by retailers across the globe. Finder’s research states that service providers and retailers are projected to lose more than $12.9 billion as spending decreases overall from $107 billion to $93.4 billion.

Decline in Brick and Mortar Shopping

More importantly, brick and mortar shopping is expected to reduce in 2020 due to health concerns. According to Accenture, more than half of all consumers across the country are opting out of retail shopping.

Ecommerce Sales Rose During Cyber Monday

Previously, Adobe reported that ecommerce sales skyrocketed, reaching almost $27 billion over Cyber Weekend from Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday. Cyber Monday ecommerce spending alone hit a record $9.4 billion, going up by 19.7%, which makes it the largest online shopping day ever in the U.S. Furthermore, Cyber Weekend accounted for one-fifth of total seasonal sales.

Despite fiscal challenges, average order value increased by 17% year over year. It averaged $144 across the five key shopping dates, according to BigCommerce. On top of that, orders from smartphones continued; even though desktops still held a lead at 49%, smartphone orders accounted for 43% of all orders.

And, it’s no surprise that Amazon led the Cyber Week in terms of sales, though Facebook saw a 123% increase in sales as well!

Holiday Spending Statistics for 2019

There are a few aspects that online marketers should keep in focus. Work smart, don’t put all your effort into waste.

But before we proceed further, take a look at this holiday spending statistic by eMarketer, “Holiday Season 2019 will experience a healthy growth of 3.7%, assisting holiday sales to reach up to $1.035 trillion.”

12 Ecommerce Best Practices to Boost Your Holiday Sales 2020

i) Holiday Spending Starts in October

Almost 22% of people start their holiday shopping in October. Retail giants like WalMart, Best Buy and others often promote their deals before Halloween until Thanksgiving. It creates a cascading effect and has become a holiday trend.

Online shoppers cannot wait for the official sales season. They search for all the deals they can find before the season begins. You can increase your profits sharply with an extended period of promotion. It’s better to start promoting your deals early in October.

ii) In-Store Footfall Is Reducing

Regardless of the holiday sales season, the in-store footfall continues to lose ground. According to a study, foot traffic in US retail stores fell by 7.5%. Why? Because purchasing from mobile devices has become a new trend. It is convenient for many consumers and is challenging the traditional purchasing practices from physical stores. Hence, you must ensure your online game is rock-solid!

iii) Cell Phones Are the Go-To Purchase Channel

According to Digital Commerce 360, smartphone sales solely were responsible to generate $38.8 billion from November 1st – December 31st, 2018, whereas $11.2 billion was the result of online sales from tablets.

As per the holiday spending statistics 2018, smartphones marked the first time in history to bring in the majority of web traffic i.e. 51%, up from 46% in 2017. Based on the current holiday retail trends for 2019, you should expect a higher turnover this year as well. Also, retailers who offer a shopping app tend to generate more than 50% of online transactions.

In-app sales dominate. You must ensure your website and app are fully equipped and super responsive. Focus on speed, user experience, and the ease of checking out. Also, mobile shopping dominates during night time and weekends of the holiday season.

iv) AI will boom

During the holiday season 2018, we saw Artificial Intelligence powered solutions being deployed by many in the USA. Henceforth, it’s safe to say that AI will gain more clout as industry experts are predicting 85% of all holiday season transactions will be AI-based by the year 2020.

Online businesses must target granular segments and reach out to their customers with a level of personalization. With the available data, marketers can train AI algorithms and identify significant variables to their advantage.

For instance, if a teenager is searching for a present for his/her older relative, dynamic segmentation can place them in the segment that is most suitable to their current online purchasing behavior. By using real-time data, businesses can present relevant offers and avoid using obsolete data for targeting.

v) Online Shoppers Have a Stronger Purchasing Power

People will buy many gifts online during the holiday season 2019. This is great news for foreign dropshippers. eMarketer says the purchasing power of American customers is at its peak since 2000. Lower unemployment and better wages will have a positive impact on holiday spending statistics this season.

By creating festive visuals and incorporating them within your promotions throughout the holiday season will allow you to increase your conversions and enjoy better sales during the biggest online shopping extravaganza of the year.

vi) Email Converts Best for Holiday Online Shopping

Emails still rule during the holiday sales season. Klayvio says emails contribute 27% to the holiday spending statistics during the peak of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Roughly 500,000 online merchants assured that emails brought them higher sales. The following numbers speak for themselves.

  • Email Conversions: 4.29%
  • Organic Search: 3.04%
  • Direct Sales: 2.93%
  • Social Media: 1.81%

Checkout 17 Best Ecommerce Email Marketing Tips to Boost Holiday Sales

vii) Free Shipping

Here is another important fact about holiday trends, did you know that 47% of online shoppers don’t want to pay for shipping? They dislike it, hence, if your budget allows it, offer free shipping during the Holiday Season.

It’s needless to mention that it will create a significant impact and increase your holiday season sales significantly. However, if you cannot offer free shipping, at least consider offering shipping discounts and don’t let the online shopper opt for your competition.

In a Nutshell

Try a different approach this holiday season. Think outside the traditional holiday box. Offer wow deals from as early as October. Don’t forget to optimize your ecommerce store for mobile users. Also, pay attention to the post-holiday opportunities. Research various holiday spending statistics and optimize your store accordingly.

Use as much data as possible to create the best possible customer experience. Find your winning products and stick to them. The biggest sales season of the year is here. Work smart and scale your ecommerce through the roof. With that said, despite what the holiday season 2019 has to offer, are you ready to grab the opportunity and boost your ecommerce sales?

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Najam Ahmed

I work as a digital content producer at Cloudways. Besides that, I love to read, and i love to play the guitar. Fan of all things Arsenal and the Patriots. Occasional gamer. I like to fly drones too. Jack of all trades.


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